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The Owl Keeper

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3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  949 Ratings  ·  154 Reviews
Maxwell Unger has always loved the night. He used to do brave things like go tramping through the forest with his Gran after dark. He loved the stories she told him about the world before the Destruction--about nature, and books, and the silver owls. His favorite story, though, was about the Owl Keeper.
Max's Gran is gone now, and so are her stories of how the world used to
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Paperback, 306 pages
Published April 5th 2011 by Yearling (first published January 1st 2010)
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(showing 1-30)
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Kate
Aug 21, 2009 Kate rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2010
The Owl Keeper is a non-stop, action packed ball of awesomeness. Based on the novel's summary, I figured I was in for a tale just about a boy and owls. Thought there also might be a little fantasy sprinkled in to keep things going. Wrong. Christine Brodien-Jones carefully mixes in hints of dystopian, mystery, adventure, and fantasy to create hands down the best novel aimed at younger teens that I have read since the Harry Potter series.

To say the least, Christine Brodien-Jones and The Owl Keeper
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Rebecca McNutt
Nov 08, 2015 Rebecca McNutt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is fantastic, original and exciting, and in this day and age, book like that are getting increasingly difficult to find. I loved it, it's definitely worth reading.
Mel
Jun 22, 2012 Mel rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan
Nov 10, 2011 Jan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Eleven-year-old Max Unger lived with his parents in a world of the future, a few decades after the Great Destruction of 2066. Because he was told he had a sun allergy, he stayed indoors in the daytime. At night, he loved to wander in the light of the 2 moons, and dream of caring for owls, who were also creatures of the dark. His special love was silver owls, and he was horrified when he heard that the High Echelon wanted to eliminate all of them. Max's Gran had told him silver owls were special, ...more
Danika Dinsmore
I was really drawn to this book by the concept. It sounded so original. A boy living in a post-apocalyptic world who is allergic to the daylight and in search of The Owl Keeper. A combination dystopia - fantasy, two of my favourite genres.

I was a bit disappointed, though. I couldn't get emotionally invested in the main characters, who were underdeveloped. Max was an extremely passive protagonist. Instead of deducing and investigating and discovering and being ingenious, he coincidentally overhea
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Theresa Milstein
This review is from my nine-year-old daughter Mia:

The Owl Keeper is a dystopian book that has fantasy in it.

It was about a boy named Max who can't go out in the light because he's allergic to sun particles. Yet it's mysterious because no one will tell him anything, like what his parents do at their work. Max has started to forget lots of things about his past. He has an owl on a tree outside his house that he sneaks to at night. The government says there are no owls. Max thinks the government l
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Max Uhrig
This turned out to be more of a childrens book than I expected, but still was a very pleasant read. The story is nothing out of the ordinary but it is sweet and builds a cool and surprisingly dark world.
Some of the more "action"packed scenes could have profited from a few additional pages, it feels like the book glances over a lot of things, which on the other hand keeps it from ever getting stale. I guess the ending builds up to a to be announced sequel, because otherwise it would indeed take t
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Jeanette
Aug 20, 2010 Jeanette rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
1 1/2 stars. This book had no idea what it wanted to be about.
Katieb (MundieMoms)
I am so captivated by the cover. It's beautiful. The illustrations at the beginning of each chapter are just as intriguing. Get ready to be swept away into an amazing world where nothing is what it seems, and as the darkness is taking over the world, the hope of many rests on two eleven and twelve year olds.

Max and Rose live in a world that has been taken over by The High Echelon. They have destroyed everything that was good in the world, and have killed off most of the animals, altered the wea
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Cat
Jul 13, 2010 Cat rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully written, fantastic story. I will certainly buy more books from this author. Brilliant debut!

(from my blog)
This book was beautifully written. The story was beautiful, the descriptions were beautiful the relationship between Max and his owl and yes, even Rose was beautiful.

This story was also creepy in a way that I was not expecting. Guess what? I stumbled into yet another dystopian novel and didn’t even know it! I was just so happy that my crappy library had this book when none of the
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Val
Nov 14, 2011 Val rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I so wanted to love this book. The idea for the story was great but the stilted dialog and under developed plot really made it lack. I can see younger readers who might not care too much about the little details, enjoying this book. However, as a librarian I was very disappointed in how the author failed to resolve or describe some of the side stories and the reason as to why the world was in such turmoil. Where did the High Echelon come from in the first place?? Why were they imprisoning childr ...more
Teeyanna
It was one of the weirdest books I have ever read in my life! But....................I loved it. I really loved this book. How you didn't know if the two main characters would make a love story,or just a classic friendship one. It was very good. The suspense will eat you up. Especially the parts when you find out something that you never knew. Its a big deal.
Lily
Mar 21, 2012 Lily rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a very good book. It was scary in some parts. My favorite part is when they were chased by the Misshapens.
Lilibeth
Dec 23, 2010 Lilibeth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-fantasy
With only memories of his Gran, small treasures that were sneaked past Mrs.Cumlin's inspections, Maxwell Unger lives through the night and dark of the High Echelon's world. Getting monthly injections of grotesque liquid was a result of Max's allergy to "sun particles." The stories of silver owls and Silver Prophecies are practically forbidden to speak. So is Max's Gran's death. With the slow deterioration of his memory, Max tries to visit his owl tree and his silver owl every night. One night he ...more
Nikki (Wicked Awesome Books)
Years in the future, the world we all know has been transformed and the High Echelon is in charge of everything. The citizens are assigned to jobs and lives and the once beautiful land and wildlife is nonexistent. The silver owls that once roamed the skies are said to be extinct and both their song and their magic is gone. Max Unger is an often scared, frail eleven year old boy who has lived much of his life in the dark. Max is told that he is allergic to sun particles, so the majority of his ti ...more
Alyssa
I was a little skeptical about this one, mostly because of the dystopian type setting, however I persevered and read it through to the end! :) I would really shoot more for a 3.5 star rating, but not as far as 4 stars. Don't get me wrong this is a great book! (Before I get too in-depth, remember this is my personal opinion only, you may completely disagree with my entire review, but you should still read the book, despite what my or any review says!) :)

Now, first the cover is absolutely beautifu
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Kitty Honeycutt
Jan 18, 2013 Kitty Honeycutt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My overall reaction to this novel is extremely favorable. I have definitely found another all time favorite children's author. My 12 year old daughter read the book and demanded I read it right after she was done. In her words, "Mom, this is one of the greatest books I have ever read, there has to be a second book!" She promptly made me stop what I was doing and look up the author to find out. When I told her there were other novels by Mrs. Jones she let me know with profound importance that she ...more
Julie
May 03, 2013 Julie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book was an exercise in frustration. The main character, a 12 year old boy, was unbelievably dumb; and I felt an insult to all 12 year old boys. The main themes were beyond a fantasy distopia. Do you really want themes of all government is evil; and don't trust your baby sitter-she's drugging you, for 10 year old kids? I was offended too that the main character's parents were "too tired from working all day in the chocolate factory" to notice that the baby sitter was evil?! Owls are hugely ...more
Celeste
Aug 02, 2016 Celeste rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kind of a contemporary fantasy, kind of a post-apoc dystopia. What a strange yet inventive mix! There are ancient prophecies about silver owls and Sages, and there are weird government-run genetic experiments and futuristic dome cities. And it all somehow works. The dialogue isn't the most natural-feeling and a lot of the plot elements are pretty superficial, but they're okay for a middle grade book. There is some pretty creepy and dark stuff but probably nothing beyond Roald Dahl-level. I wasn' ...more
Aelvana
Sep 20, 2016 Aelvana rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Max used to have a good life with his grandma, who taught him all about the silver owls and the prophecy that one day the Owl Keeper would overthrow the darkness with the help of a silver owl. But after his grandma dies, he contracts a strange disease that leaves him allergic to sunlight. Then the silver owl shows up. Max is infatuated with the owl, but the government is trying to exterminate them . . .

This book tries to blend fantasy with dystopia, and in my opinion usually fails. From the few
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Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
I am so captivated by the cover. It's beautiful. The illustrations at the beginning of each chapter are just as intriguing. Get ready to be swept away into an amazing world where nothing is what it seems, and as the darkness is taking over the world, the hope of many rests on two eleven and twelve year olds.

Max and Rose live in a world that has been taken over by The High Echelon. They have destroyed everything that was good in the world, and have killed off most of the animals, altered the wea
...more
Kari
Sep 12, 2009 Kari rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


Though this is a middle grade novel with a main character who is 11, close to 12, this book is certainly not written on a elementary level. The writing is strong and the descriptions thorough, giving a great overall image and making it enjoying for readers of all ages. Particularly for this book, the age choice works beautifully, pulling the story in a way it wouldn't otherwise go if the main character was even just a few years older.

Max leads a unique life even in this dystopian setting, confin
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Tanja Voosen
Apr 13, 2012 Tanja Voosen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Buchgestaltung

Ich liebe das Cover, denn ich liebe Eulen. Und das Cover ist so schön gestaltet. Es schafft eine perfekte Mischung aus mysteriösem und märchenhaftem. Ist die Eule nicht einfach nur supersüß? :) Ach ja, zum Titel und Inhalt passt es natürlich wie die Faust aufs Auge!

Meinung

Man merkt dem Buch deutlich an, das es für jüngere Leser konzipiert ist und trotzdem bin ich der Geschichte total erlegen, weil sie einfach zauberhaft war! Das Faszinierende an dem Buch war auch, das es typische S
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Sarah
I was super excited about this book; dystopia/fantasy for Middle Grade, what could be better? After reading Uglies about a year ago I have been reading all the dystopic, futuristic YA I can find, but I haven't really found many Middle Grade dystopias. So as soon as I heard about The Owl Keeper I knew I had to read it.

Brodien-Jones has crafted a beautiful, exciting, action-filled story perfect for middle graders. I couldn't put it down; I had to keep reading to see what was going to happen to Ma
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Miss Clark
Dec 15, 2009 Miss Clark rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Middle Graders
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sovotchka
Oct 02, 2012 Sovotchka rated it liked it
Well, this is one misleading back blurb, if ever I've seen one.

Expecting a fairytale for children, I should have realized that something was amiss when I saw that people were shelving this as "Science Fiction -> Dystopia". Other genres include "Young Adult -> Fantasy", "Animals" and "Adventure", and if you're wondering how that goes together - well, it doesn't. Not in this book at least.

Apart from the fact that the author was throwing in way more stuff than she could handle (and really, w
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Stephen
After the Great Destruction, much of the world is uninhabitable. The shady and oppressive government, The High Echelon, is building massive domes for people to live in while spreading fear about the outside world. Max is a boy allergic to sun particles, who spends his nights with a silver owl he found in a tree. His grandmother told him that in a time of absolute dark an Owl Keeper would emerge to save the world. After he meets a girl named Rose who opens his eyes to what is happening around the ...more
Reading Vacation
May 21, 2011 Reading Vacation rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Max grew up listening to his gran spin marvelous stories about life before the Destruction. She would tell of a time before the darkness, before the frozen zone and the High Echelon existed, a time when there were plenty of books and silver owls. She also shared stories of the Owl Keeper, who united owls and sages in peace. Then, one day, gran was gone.

Shy and quiet Max is a sort of accidental hero. He doesn’t set out to do anything special, but it seems this is his destiny. When Max meets Rose,
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Matt
not enough action. a lot of telling, not showing, though it flowed. great premise, but how is this a "J-FIC"? Written like a "Y" at least. I think the marketing was all wrong, and as a first time writer, you should know that you have to have greater action in a children's book well before page 70 or 80. This should have been dumbed-down or ramped-up, but as it stands, I don't know what audience the publisher was fishing for. I liked the world building, but there was all kinds of stuff in here ki ...more
L. Gibbs
Jan 12, 2012 L. Gibbs rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: YA readers
I read this book at my daughter's request. It reminds me of The Giver and 1984 with a positive twist and is clearly written for the YA market. Though it seemed a bit slow right on into the middle of the book, it still held my attention for I was caught up enough to expect any moment for the things to go very wrong for Maxwell. There were several times I was wondering why the main character didn't just leave home, but how often do children feel they can just up and leave, especially when they are ...more
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I've always been drawn to the mysterious “other worlds” we inhabit as children: the invisible secret worlds that adults never seem to notice. Much of my childhood was spent immersed in books (the library was just around the corner) and I wrote my first story at age seven about a girl and a dragon.

Branches of trees were the best places to read books. My favorites were fairy tales, fantasy and scien
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“Just because there were times you were frightened doesn't mean you weren't brave.” 4 likes
“Without doubt, it is the greatest act of courage that is often the most fearful.” 2 likes
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